by Dianna Hobbs
This week, I’ve been babysitting my 5-month-old niece, Azoria, who was born on Veteran’s Day last year. When she smiles, her deep dimples and her sparkling eyes melt my heart. The Hobbs children love babies, so their cousin Zo-Zo has them all completely wrapped around her tiny finger. They are enamored by her.
We all are.
As we were bouncing Zo-Zo and playing with her yesterday, our youngest son Kaleb asked me, “Mom, how can you tell what she wants when she cries?”
“Sometimes, you can’t,” I explained. “She could be crying for any number of reasons. You have to try to figure it out.”
If you have children or have extensive experience caring for little ones that can’t talk, you know this very well. A baby’s cries could mean anything. They might be hungry, in need of a diaper change, sleepy, cranky, teething, or even sick. There are days when it’s quick and easy to pinpoint the issue. There are other times when it’s neither fast nor simple.
When the Hobbs children were babies, I remember them being inconsolable some nights and early mornings. Nothing seemed to make them happy or quiet them. I would go through my mental checklist to make sure they had been fed and dried. I would check their temperature, cuddle and rock them; and yet, they weren’t happy.
Days and nights like those were the roughest. Kenya and I would take turns walking the floor with whichever baby was struggling, hoping and praying they would drop off to sleep soon. Their cries, even when we couldn’t interpret them, at the very least, alerted us that the baby needed something, even if it was only a little extra love and attention.
Aren’t you glad that, in your walk with the Lord, you don’t have to be a baby to cry out for help?
Although we should pray without ceasing (1 Thessalonians 5:17), there are times of serious distress when we need to release a cry of desperation. There are seasons that get to be so distressing that our anguish can no longer be internalized. When we release the inner-pain, it doesn’t come out in word form, but rather, in liquid form.
Back of the throat sobs break through the silence. Emotion overwhelms us and that fountain of tears becomes an ocean deep enough to dive into and drown. So what do you do in distressing times? How do you overcome? How can you get the help you need?
Well, David shows us the formula in Psalm 18. In verse 6 (NLT) he wrote, “But in my distress I cried out to the Lord; yes, I prayed to my God for help. He heard me from his sanctuary; my cry to him reached his ears.”
David said he cried out to God and the Lord heard him! In the introduction to this particular psalm the Bible tells us when the words of this song were written by David. It was during the time when the Lord delivered him from the hand of all his enemies and from the hand of Saul. As you see, in David’s distress, he cried out with all his heart and God showed up and set him free. Crying out unto the Lord for help is necessary in order to receive deliverance.
The blind beggar Bartimaeus cried out too in Mark 10:46-52. At this time, Jesus, along with His disciples and a large crowd were about to leave Jericho. But when Bartimaeus heard that Jesus of Nazareth — the person with power to heal him — was in the vicinity, he cried out for mercy.
People tried to shut him up. They told him to stop all of that rambunctious, obnoxious yelling, but Bartimaeus refused. The more the crowd tried to shush him, the louder he cried out, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!”
And you know what? Jesus stopped and summoned Bartimaeus. “What do you want me to do for you?” the Savior asked him.
Bartimaeus, whose name means “Son of the Unclean” or “Heir of Uncleanness,” said he wanted to receive his sight. Despite how others perceived him and his condition, Bartimaeus believed in Christ’s power to heal him. And Jesus did just that. When the Anointed One restored his sight, He told Bartimaeus, “Your faith has healed you.”
Now, according to man’s estimation, Bartimaeus, in his unclean and lowly state, was unworthy to be in the presence of Jesus. He wasn’t fit to cry out to the Master and request deliverance. Yet, he refused to let his life’s circumstances and the opinions of people shut his mouth. In the midst of opposition, he kept on crying out.
He held on to his faith. That’s how Bartimaeus, a great example to us all, got his breakthrough; it is exactly how you will get yours with the help of the Lord.
The enemy wants you to let life, adversity, trouble, hindrances and criticism make you shut your mouth, give up and succumb to weariness. But God is empowering you to press on and get what’s coming. Good things are up ahead. As long as you don’t quit in response to adverse circumstances, you’ll make it.
Cry out like David. Cry out like Bartimaeus and watch God move.
Be persistent in prayer. Remain firm in faith. Be steadfast and don’t stop believing in His promises.
To encourage you to continue crying out and making your requests known to God, I’m stirring Matthew 7:7 NLT into your cup of inspiration, which says, “Keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you.”
As you drink down the contents of your cup, remember that your determination to keep pressing, praying, trusting, crying out, and hoping in God is essential to receiving your breakthrough. Push back against every force that tries to shut your mouth and challenge your faith in God’s power to bring you out.
The same God who had enough mercy to deliver David, heal an unclean beggar, and miraculously cure a little old blogger named Dianna Hobbs from Buffalo, New York, will have mercy on you.
Cry out to God and watch Him move.
Do what Hebrews 4:16 NLT says: “So let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God. There we will receive his mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it most.”